Category Archives: News

Ermanno Olmi (1931 – 2018)

Gino Moliterno   ANU

Less than three weeks after the death of Vittorio Taviani the Italian cinema has lost another of its great veteran filmmakers – Ermanno Olmi who died on May 7. With a strong attachment to his peasant origins and his rural Catholic background, both of which were amply reflected in his major works, for the last 60 years Olmi had come to occupy a unique position within mainstream Italian cinema through a series of films that were remarkable for their honesty and authenticity and for their profound commitment to validating the ordinary lives and daily experiences of common people.  Continue reading

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Jo-Anne Duggan Prize for 2017: Call for submissions

Revised 2017 Duggan posterACIS is calling for submissions – essay or creative work with exegesis – for the biennial Prize in memory of Jo-Anne Duggan to be awarded in 2017. Jo-Anne was a talented photo-media artist and scholar whose engagement in original ways with Italian culture and history won great admiration. Her work, viewable at The Colour Factory and illustrated by the backdrop to our home page, dealt in particular with Italian Renaissance material culture seen through what she called her ‘postcolonial eye’. The Prize is worth $1000 for the best essay or creative work with exegesis and $250 each for up to two runners-up. It is open to early career researchers, postgraduates and undergraduates from Australia and New Zealand and will be awarded for essays or creative work on a topic which draws on Jo-Anne’s work and inspiration. The deadline for submissions is 3 March 2017Full details on eligibility and submissions, as well as guidelines for creative works and their exegeses, can be found under Prize on the ACIS menu.

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ACIS SCHOLARSHIPS FOR POSTGRADUATE RESEARCH IN ITALY IN 2017

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The Australasian Centre for Italian Studies (ACIS), supported by the Cassamarca Foundation (Treviso), is offering UP TO THREE scholarships worth A$6,000 each to provide postgraduate students at an Australian or New Zealand university with the opportunity to work on a research project in Italy in 2017. For one of the awards, the Dino De Poli Scholarship which honours the President of the Cassamarca Foundation, preference may be given to applications for research on any aspect of the culture, history and society of North East Italy. Details of eligibility and the application procedure are available here, accompanied by guidelines for describing projects. The closing date for applications is Friday 14 October 2016.

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New Honorary Research Associates

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ACIS is very pleased that Josh Brown and Alessandro Carrieri have accepted appointments as Honorary Research Associates. Dr Brown has interests in language in both historical and contemporary contexts. Using materials from the archives of merchants, he has analysed variations in language use in 14thC and 15thC Milan; he has written on the life and letters of a cardinal in mid-19thC Western Australia; and he has explored factors in Italian language enrolments in current tertiary education. Dr Carrieri, whose doctoral research was on music, memory and resistance among Jewish musicians in concentration camps and ghettos, has been a Visiting Research Fellow in Holocaust Studies at the Australian Centre for Jewish Civilisation (Monash). His current research concerns the history of the persecution and expulsion of Italian Jewish musicians and composers from conservatories and theatres during Fascist rule; he has recently organised a conference in Trieste on that topic.

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Agnelli, Pirelli, Brambilla? No. Hu, Chen, Zhang…

154049272-158a01e7-f0c0-4ef0-9ffd-0bea5a3fb40fPostscript to the call for papers on relations between China and Italy (August 26). HERE are the names of the most common surnames among the entrepreneurs who set up new businesses in Italy in the first 8 months of this year. The Camera di Commercio of Monza and Brianza examined a sample of 7 regions (only one in south Italy) and turned up what will probably be some surprises. Check out the Veneto ….

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Rizzoli Bookstore Reopens in NYC

Sally Grant   New York

The old Rizzoli Bookstore on 57th St, NYC Photo credit: Rizzoli Bookstore

The old Rizzoli Bookstore on 57th St, NYC
© Rizzoli Bookstore

Book – and bookshop – lovers of the world rejoice! After closing the doors of its beloved 57th Street store last year, Rizzoli New York opened a new flagship in the NoMad district of Manhattan last Monday. While this location, in the nineteenth-century St. James Building at 1133 Broadway, may not be able to replace the now-lost historic charm of its predecessor, with its famed vaulted ceilings (the building has since been demolished to make way for a luxury development – who’d have thought it?), for an independent bookstore to re-open these days is an event to be celebrated.

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Burning emotions: Giovanni Tarantino at the Museo Italiano, Thursday 25 September 2014, at 6.30 pm

image001For about ten years now there has been talk of history having taken an “emotional turn”. If the scholars of the Annales School were aiming to write history from the bottom up, the historians of emotions aim “to write history from the inside out”. They try to recover the history of men and women’s subjectivity, focusing on diaries, private correspondence, gravestones, memorial monuments, ballads, relics, clothes, recipes, textiles, and visual sources. In Burning Emotions: Concepts, challenges, cases for the History of Emotions, a talk at the Museo Italiano in Carlton on Thursday 25 Sept at 6.30 pm, Giovanni Tarantino, from the ARC Centre of Excellence for the History of Emotions at the University of Melbourne, will discuss how different attempts to extinguish a fire consuming a multi-storey pagoda as represented in a late 18th century Japanese hanging silk scroll recently added to the permanent collection of the Minneapolis Institute of Arts reveal how cultural differences and cultural encounters deeply affected early modern emotional (and technical) responses to burning cityscapes and the enduring memories associated with them.

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Tales and Visions: Antonio Tabucchi and the Iconic Temptations of his Fiction

220px-Antonio_TabucchiMichela Meschini (University of Macerata) will give a talk entitled Tales and Visions: Antonio Tabucchi and the Iconic Temptations of his Fiction at the Museo Italiano, 199 Faraday St, Carlton 3053, on Monday 11 August at 6.30 p.m.  By exploring the dialogue between visuality and narration, she will illustrate the subtle intertextuality of Tabucchi’s fiction, where cinematic images, photographic memories and famous paintings are the means through which the author addresses issues of identity and subjectivity. The narrative reference to visual images emphasises the emotional overtones of Tabucchi’s stories while also shaping his idea of fiction.

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Stillness in motion: Italy, photography, modernity

Sally Hill   Victoria University of Wellington

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Contemplating the first daguerreotypes of “a motionless, lunar Italy, suspended over bottomless pasts,” the social historian Giulio Bollati wondered how photography could fulfill its modernizing vocation in such a timeless and pastoral scene. What happens when photography encounters this “deviant and peculiar” historical environment? Would such “backwardness” alter or impair photography’s meanings and its expression of industrial Europe? What does Italian cultural history look like studied through the lens of photographic technology? How does the Italian context speak to photographic theory in general?

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William Kent: Designing Georgian Britain (under Italian influence)

Sally Grant   New York

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Chiswick House with statue of Palladio © Devonshire Collection, Chatsworth

Anyone heading to London in the next couple of months or so may want to check out the current exhibition being held at the V&A, William Kent: Designing Georgian Britain. While the title itself doesn’t convey any obvious Italian links, like so many others who made the Grand Tour during the eighteenth century, Kent was very much influenced by the art and culture of Italy. This is especially thought-provoking here as the organisers present Kent, who was a painter, designer, and architect, as integral to the development of a style of art that reflected the ideals of a new, Georgian, British nation. (The exhibition is one of a number of events this year that celebrate the 300th year anniversary of the Hanoverian accession to the throne in 1714.)

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